More Than This by Patrick Ness opens with Seth drowning, fighting for his last breath. Then he dies. But then he wakes up. Seth doesn’t wake up in the same place he died though. He wakes up in England, in a childhood home he’s tried to forget, covered in a strange tape, and completely alone. Is he dead? Is this desolate, abandoned, run-down version of the town he was born in, hell?
The story of who Seth was when he was alive, and the mystery surrounding his family’s sudden and hurried move to the States, and the mystery of where he is in the present are interwoven expertly, keeping the reader turning the pages even when present Seth is just acclimatizing to his strange surroundings. The possibilities of Seth’s present range from hell to a post-apocalyptic world, and as more is uncovered, more questions are raised. Once the book really starts gaining momentum it’s hard to put down. Just as you think you have a grasp on what is going on it makes you question everything.